The national parks and those who work to preserve them have endured a lot because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thankfully, help is on the way for them in the form of regulations and more.
National Treasury Employees Union Chapter 336 President Roland Phillips and Assistant Counsel Sarah Riger joined America’s Work Force Union Podcast to explain what these workers have endured and how new regulations will help them do their jobs.
Effects of the pandemic on park service workers
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone in one way or another, including those who work within the national park system.
Phillips said that there is a lot of work to get done with fewer people. He said he wants listeners to be patient and courteous to the dedicated people working through this. While some projects are backlogged, he promised they are working to get things done.
He then spoke about the maintenance workers he works alongside and how they have been affected. Personally, he has had COVID-19 after contracting the virus from a private property pick-up location of a government vehicle. He said the people who used the truck did not follow protocol, did not wear masks and it resulted in him and his co-worker falling ill.
Despite falling ill, Phillips said he has had no problems from other members of the union. He even said the workers are thankful protections are being put in place.
Working under the Biden administration
Both Phillips and Riger said they are excited to get to work with the Biden administration in control. They said that this administration will be more friendly to those working in the parks and within government.